Posted on August 24, 2014 at 9:00 PM
The business aspects of the web are closely tied together with marketing, as they are in the physical world. Marketing is the art of making sales based on the promotional skills and values, but also the quality and usability of the product that you are marketing. Online business owners can choose between a variety of marketing techniques — search marketing, blog marketing, paid advertising, word of mouth, but one of the most popular online marketing techniques today are known as email marketing — the art of selling and promotion using email. Some say it’s as simple as creating an email list, getting people to sign-up to the list, and just sending them offers all day long.
It’s a very flawed way to perceive such a beautiful way of connecting with the people who were interested in your content in the first place, even worse when we choose to ignore email marketing altogether, which seems to be the case for one-third of the online marketers active today, as claimed by a recent study. On the topic of mistakes, a lot of email marketing people also tend to send out the email marketing email to all of their subscribers, forgetting the importance of email personalization the good that it can do to your business.
Email marketing in itself is a huge topic, and there are dozens of large-scale blogs and brands dedicated to helping others make the most of their email lists, including actual email service providers themselves. In our view, and which we known is the view of many others, a good email begins with its design. And now that majority of email clients and email platforms support new web standards, we can send out responsive email messages to all of our desktop and mobile users, without making any sacrifices in the design. Responsive email, much like responsive web design, ensures that the emails we send are perceived by the receiver equally well on whichever device they choose to open the email on — and we all know by know that mobile can no longer be ignored, only embraced.
To help online marketers make better choices about their email marketing, we have assessed a list of the most popular and what others call the best responsive email marketing templates, in the form of actual templates, but also responsive email marketing frameworks that can be used to build custom templates that better reflect your ideas and your aspirations for the emails that you send out. You are more than welcome to recommend more additions to this post by dropping a comment at the bottom of the post, we take our community input very seriously.
Crafting a raw HTML email template can be quite the challenge in itself, and when it comes to creating responsive emails, there’s so much more than we need to take into consideration. This is why frameworks like Cerberus can become increasingly useful for all the requirements that responsive email marketing presents. This tiny framework library is built to serve its users with a few solid HTML email patterns that you can quickly stitch together to create unforgettable email browsing experiences for your email list subscribers. The small layout patterns are built with HTML, and by no means are meant to serve as an end-result for your email needs, Cerberus developers encourage you to play with the HTML code to make your own adjustments based on what you expect your end result to look like — the framework is merely a bridge to help you create responsive emails on the go.
Litmus is a known brand for those who enjoy testing and analyzing the performance of their email marketing campaigns, and it only makes sense that the Litmus team would try and give back to the community by offering some freebies, and as it happens those freebies have fallen under the category of responsive email marketing templates. All five templates come in different categories, including: newsletter template, template for announcing new products, a receipt template for all your invoicing needs, a simple announcement template to send out brief messages, and even a minimal stationery template that will be of great use to those who like to keep it simple, but also responsive.
Responsive HTML Email Framework
When someone names their project Email Framework, you are without question entitled to expect some really great features, otherwise what is the point, right? Well, luckily this open-source project (find it on GitHub) is exactly that, a full-scale solution for all your responsive email layout needs. The framework provides the developer / user with a set of grids, modules, blocks and rows for content, spacing elements, buttons, image rows and other similar elements that might go into building a flawless email template. Thanks to Litmus testing, the framework has been tested to work with the leading email clients that majority of internet users are using today.
Foundation for Emails
Foundation is a collection of different frameworks and platforms for enhacing web development experience, and email is also one of the top prioroties of this company, providing developers and designers with an easy to use CSS framework for quickly building up effective HTML5 responsive emails. Every template begins by using the provided Foundation Grid which you can then enhance with additional elements that you would most commonly find in email templates anyway. Whether eCommerce or business branding, Foundation is a great aid in building responsive email templates at no cost.
Antworth doesn’t call itself a framework, rather a resource of pre-built email layout templates that will natively adapt to desktop and mobile devices. It works flawlessly with iOS and Android systems, and support email clients like Yahoo!, Gmail and Outlook out of the box, even some of the most older versions of Outlook. The layouts have been designed with dynamic content as the basis, meaning you can really customize each email to look the way you want it to look, without having to worry about your content display. The design style is minimal.
Playground from ZURB
ZURB is the foundation company for the HTML5 framework Foundation, and it also used to operate a service called Ink — which is now better known as Foundation Email, a framework that we already mentioned in our list. Playground from ZURB offers a choice of five different email templates that will adapt to responsive requirements effortlessly. All templates come with separate stylesheets and HTML documents for maximum versatility of design changes, you can expect these templates to work fine with any major email serving platform on the web right now. You will most definitely need to find a service to use these templates with, since an email service (like MailChimp) can help to combine both HTML and CSS in a single file when sending out an email.
Mosaico is a unique email bulding platform that lets anyone build responsive email layouts within a platform envrionment. Mosaico gives its users tools like custom element management and overall design adaptability, allowing you to personalize all of your designs with a single click of a button. An in-built system for helping you undo and redo any changes, instead of having you browse through endless piles of revisions. You can even preload your own custom email templates for management within the Mosaico system. The platform is open-source and encourages everyone to participate in making the project bigger and better.
Open Source Email Templates
SendWithUs is a known email marketing platform that offers marketers and bloggers to build and market their templates from within a simple email marketing environment. As a way of expressing thanks back to the marketing community, SendWithUs is sharing with us a library of ten unique and responsive email templates for your own use, the templates are open sourced, giving you the freedom to make any changes and adjustments as you see fit. We must caution our readers that although these templates are free, they seem to be limited to just templates that consist of sending invoices to your customers.
Responsive Email Patterns
Brian Graves has built a solid foundation for creating and working with responsive emails. His project Responsive Email Patterns is a collection of pluggable email patterns that you can use to quickly build adaptable email templates for the use either in your favorite email sending platform, or directly from your own email client. The patterns cover areas like layout, lists, media, navigation and grids to package all those patterns within.
HTML Email Templates
Campaign Monitor is a reputable email marketing service that helps hundreds of thousands of online marketers to achieve optimal results with their email lists. Not only does Campaign Monitor takes care of things like email testing, and intuitive email building interfaces, it’s also a highly acknowledged email template provider. The public Campaign Monitor database for responsive email templates is packed with more than 20+ unique email templates that will be of use in almost any situation imaginable. Templates for partnerships, business talks, traditional newsletter templates, and event newsletter templates are amongst some of the favorites we adore.
Email Design Inspiration by HTML Email Designs
Now that we have indulged in plenty of frameworks, layout patterns, and other free templates, it’s time to take a look at what professional newsletter look like, and for this we recommend HTML Email Designs — a repository of the best and greatest email templates as sent out by some of the leading technology companies today; Dropbox, Udemy, Moo, DigitalOcean and many others. The great thing about these example templates is that they’ve actually been sent out to real persons, which means that you can easily begin to analyze and overview these templates to better understand what these companies have done to create such stunning templates, and why they think these templates are the ones that convert the most. Hundreds of email templates to yield inspiration from.
MJML — The Responsive Email Framework
MJML is a framework, but more than that it is a custom built markup language for helping developers to build quick and beautiful email templates that resonate well with all devices and browsers. MJML’s objective is to simplify the way people design responsive emails. The markup you end up writing with MJML is then automatically converted into fully compliant HTML5 markup that you can begin using with your email sending software. There are also a couple of preview templates available for experimentation, and perhaps even production use.
For those who don’t want to mess around with complicated frameworks and other templates, here is Respmail — a simple responsive email solution that provides you with a single template that you can modify to your own liking. Since its inception, the template has been improved and polished to work on all major email clients you can find today.
Passion is a sophisticated and complex email template that uses modern web design concepts incorporated straight into the email, the extendability of this template is so big that at times it may seem that you are sending an actual website template to someone in the email, but rest assured that all elements of this template can be detached from each other, and you can just pick whatever you feel is required for your email newsletters.
Free Newsletter Template
Free Newsletter Template from GraphicsFuel is an elegant and minimal choice for those who are seeking simplicity with their email designs. We can see this particular email template to be of great use for bloggers, creative artists, writers and individuals who just want to get their message across, without having to overload the email with modern elements and complications; to each his own we think.
Honestly, MailPortfolio follows the exact same pattern as the template we saw above, with the only difference being that MailPortfolio is more focused on the red color base, but everything else seems to be exactly the same. At the footer you can specify essential company information, which most email marketing platforms require anyway.
Valentine’s Day Email Template
February is the month of Love, and Valentine’s Day is quickly approaching! For this case, we decided to include a very beautiful Valentine’s Day oriented email template that you can send out on that special date to promote offers, to promote news, or simply to let your customers and email subscribers know how much you love them, even if that sounds a little bit cheesy. Plenty of features with this one, and we think it won’t be too hard to get this one modified for different use cases as well.
EDMDESIGNER is an email company that took its time to fully develop, and to fully adjust to the requirements of the community, and the end result ended up being a sophisticated email building platform using a drag and drop interface to help designers to what they do best, design, and in this case — design email templates. No need to spend time with recreating the same content again and again. With EDMDESIGNER you can not only save your email templates but also your favorite elements like a news block, branded header, or the unsubscribe information and reuse them in any of your future campaigns.
Modern HTML Email
We are going to wrap up our free responsive emails template list with a book, because what better way to learn about something if not from a book that’s built for that exact purpose, and this one from Jason Rodriguez is all about helping you — whoever you are, or whichever profession you work in — to build modern and sleek HTML emails that will work great across all devices, all email clients, and all browsers. The book covers simple aspects like building an email, but also how to test your emails, and how to improve them through analytics tools and insightful analytics reports.
Premium Responsive HTML Email Templates
As just mentioned, our free list of email templates has come to an end, but before we let you go and immerse yourself in your newfound tools and templates to play with, we wanted to add some additional responsive templates that come from the premium market, the pricing for these is really cheap (compared to what you would pay a designer to do it for you), and we have found some truly remarkable templates that we feel the community will appreciate.
Idea is a full-on email template that doesn’t compromise, and instead provides the user with all the modern and available HTML5 elements that can be in-built within a template itself. With Idea, selling items and promoting products will no longer be a problem, as you can easily talk about your pricing, product features and other things through a number of in-built elements that make the process easy. To make the process that much easier, there’s an in-built drag and drop module to help you create the perfect email template as you go, and also — it’s fully compatible with the leading email marketing providers.
Vibgyor can be best described as an multi-purpose email template for industries like fashion, food, and creative business. The sophisticated look of Vibgyor is what makes it so appealing for these industries, but bloggers can also benefit from this template, thanks to the drag and drop builder, you can easily change and optimize each part of the template as you go about creating the final revision.
Jaynix is a responsive email template with the inclusion of an online template editing platform that will allow you to be in full control over the look of the email templates that you are pushing out, don’t make one just for yourself — create as many templates you want for your friends too! Such an easy to work with platform, you will never want to go back to the old ways of coding up an email template. Works with major email clients, and all major email marketing services on the web right now.
Quarks is packed with dozens of movable objects all of which can help to create infinite number of email designs that you can use for all your business and blogging needs. You can adjust images, manipulate content, and use dynamic content, all of these things can be changed within the integrated Email Builder to help you save time, and also to increase productivity.
WooCommerce is one of the world’s most famous eCommerce platforms (based on WordPress), so chances are that you may be a user of WooCommerce and you are looking for a way to truly change the way you send your eCommerce newsletters to your customers — welcome to WooMail, a template that’s more than just an email template, it’s a platform that’s built to work natively with the WooCommerce plugin, all you need to do is get this template and integrate it within your WordPress installation to gain access to a huge set of features and options for sending emails to your WooCommerce user base. The process of getting WooMail to work is an easy one, and you will find the benefits to be business changing.
Last up we have beautiful and web design optimized template Moka. Moka is an elegant all-purpose template that you can still customize for your own needs using the in-built template editor. It has been tested to work with all latest devices and browsers, so you should have no problem getting others to open up this email and experience it fully.
Courtesy: Alex Ivanovs